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2009.06.24

Impact Factor of Computer Science Journals 2008

The ISI Web of Knowledge recently published the 2008 Journal Citation Reports. Following similar studies I performed in 2007 and 2008, here is my analysis of the current status and trends for the impact factor in computer science journals.

Let me start with an overview of the method I followed. I performed my analysis on the 394 journals appearing under the ISI's computer science subject categories: artificial intelligence; cybernetics; hardware & architecture; information systems; interdisciplinary applications; software engineering; theory & methods. Note that journals may appear in many categories. In particular, there are many overlaps between the above categories and "electrical and electronic engineering" and "operations research and management science".

Don't take this report too seriously. The impact factor is notoriously prone to misuse; let's not make the situation worse. Also note that in computer science there are tens of prestigious conferences whose impact factor has been calculated to be higher than that of most journals.

Journals with Highest IF

RankNameISSNIF
1ACM COMPUT SURV0360-03009.920
2VLDB J1066-88886.800
3IEEE T PATTERN ANAL0162-88285.960
4INT J COMPUT VISION0920-56915.358
5MIS QUART0276-77835.183
6IEEE T MED IMAGING0278-00624.004
7ACM T SOFTW ENG METH1049-331X3.958
8IEEE T INFORM THEORY0018-94483.793
9IEEE T EVOLUT COMPUT1089-778X3.736
10IEEE T NEURAL NETWOR1045-92273.726

Interestingly, only one journal in the above list is published by a for-profit entity: INT J COMPUT VISION (Springer). The rest are published by the IEEE (5), the ACM (2), the Carlson School of Management (MIS QUART), and the VLDB endownment (VLDB J).

As I wrote in previous years, note here the high impact factor of journals touching on life-sciences (IEEE T PATTERN ANAL, INT J COMPUT VISION, IEEE T MED IMAGING, IEEE T EVOLUT COMPUT, IEEE T NEURAL NETWOR). This continues to be the fact despite the removal of three journals that were in the top positions in 2007 (BIOINFORMATICS, COGNITIVE BRAIN RES, NEURINFORMATICS) from the computer science categories. This is more an indication of impact factor variations between various fields than an inherent quality property of these journals that distinguishes then from other computer science publications.

Journals Added to the JCR in 2008

ACM T COMPUT LOG
ACM T MODEL COMPUT S
ACM T MULTIM COMPUT
ADV MATH COMMUN
IET INFORM SECUR
IET SOFTW
IND MANAGE DATA SYST
INFORM FUSION
INT J DOC ANAL RECOG
INT J SEMANT WEB INF
INT J WEB SERV RES
J ASSOC INF SYST
J NETW SYST MANAG
J SIGNAL PROCESS SYS
J WEB ENG
J ZHEJIANG UNIV-SC A
PERS UBIQUIT COMPUT

Notable in the above list is ACM's success to have three of its transactions included in the list. Also, the British-based Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) had another two of its journals included, thus doubling the number of its publications tracked by the ISI. Finally, we see the addition of three journals publishing web research, bringing to 5 the journals in the ISI-tracked list with "web" in their title.

Journals Dropped from the JCR in 2008

BIOINFORMATICS
COGNITIVE BRAIN RES
COMPUT GRAPHICS-US
J COMPUT INFORM SYST
REAL-TIME IMAGING

From the above list, BIOINFORMATICS was reclassified into a category I don't include in this report: mathematical & computational biology. The other four journals are no longer tracked by the ISI. Their demise is somewhat surprising, because they had respectable IFs; in particular COGNITIVE BRAIN RES had an IF of 3.8 in 2007.

Journals with the Highest Increase in IF

NameISSNΔ IF
ACM COMPUT SURV0360-03004.67
VLDB J1066-88882.982
IEEE T PATTERN ANAL0162-88282.381
INT J COMPUT VISION0920-56911.977
IEEE T MOBILE COMPUT1536-12331.636
J COMPUT AID MOL DES0920-654X1.578
IEEE T FUZZY SYST1063-67061.487
IEEE T INFORM THEORY0018-94481.478
IEEE T SOFTWARE ENG0098-55891.464
IEEE NETWORK0890-80441.459

Journals with the Highest Decrease in IF

NameISSNΔ IF
NEUROINFORMATICS1539-2791-0.861
J ACM0004-5411-0.797
NEW GENERAT COMPUT0288-3635-0.654
MIS QUART0276-7783-0.643
CONNECT SCI0954-0091-0.616
AI MAG0738-4602-0.613
J STAT SOFTW1548-7660-0.588
J COMPUT BIOL1066-5277-0.546
ARTIF INTELL REV0269-2821-0.515
ACM T INFORM SYST1046-8188-0.497

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